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Warning: Don’t access your bank account from cyber cafes

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The Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) has cautioned Kenyans against accessing their bank accounts from cyber cafes or via public Wi-Fi and hotspots citing vulnerability of Personal Identification Numbers (PIN) to theft.

KBA is currently carrying out Financial Literacy Week, a sensitization forum geared at educating the public on how to protect their financial details while accessing their bank accounts or mobile money services online.

The theme for the workshop is Kaa Chonjo in Swahili, and Be Alert! Card and Online Safety in English.

KBA has also advised account holders to;

• Ensure that your bank has issued you with an EMV compliant Chip and PIN payment card.

• Avoid saving your PIN and passwords on your phone or keeping those details in your wallet/purse.

• Do not give out your PIN or passwords to anyone including merchants, relatives and friends.

• When you have no other option but to access your account via cyber cafes, public Wi-Fi and hotspots ensure that you cover your keypad with your palm when keying in your pin.

• If the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) retains your card, do not leave the site before notifying your bank. Never accept help from a stranger, only call your bank.

• Only provide your bank account details to facilitate transactions that you have authorised.

• When transacting online always ensure that you log in via secure internet connection. Also check that the website that you have accessed is secure (You can do this by looking for a padlock image and HTTPS extension in the URL/Web Address).

• Beware of e-mails and phone scams including messages of competitions you have not signed up for. Do not text back or call back to verify.

• Contact your bank if you notice any suspicious activity.

• If your financial information has been obtained by a cyber-criminal contact your services provider. Avoid making contact with the cyber-criminal either online or in person.

• Try to limit keeping all your cash in one account or mobile wallet. Transfer excess cash into a savings account or fixed deposit account.

KBA’s caution comes in the wake of revelations by cyber security consulting firm Serianu that Kenyan firms lost Ksh15 billion to cyber-crime in 2017, information which has been concurred by the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI)

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